Last spring, we hosted a ride with our friends from Mulberry Gap in Ellijay, GA. That ride, dubbed the #BrutalLoop, covered 35 miles of gravel and singletrack with 7,000 feet of elevation gain. Over 30 riders turned up last year to tackle the course, and by all accounts, everyone had a good time. Folks have been asking if we’re doing it again in 2016.
So, back by popular demand, we are happy to announce #BrutalLoop 2.0 on Saturday, April 23! Once again, Mulberry Gap will serve as the start and finish for the ride. Come for the day, or stay all weekend, the choice is yours. Mulberry Gap offers cabins, tent sites, and the best food this side of your grandma’s kitchen!
What to Expect
You need to be prepared for a grueling day on the bike. It ain’t called “Brutal” for nothing! Mileage will be between 20 and 35 depending on which route you choose, with climbing in the 5,000′-7,000′ range. All riders need to be self-sufficient, meaning you need to bring enough water, food, tools, and spares to get you through the day.
Both routes will start and finish at Mulberry Gap. The shorter route will climb a long gravel road up to the Bear Creek Overlook before bombing down Bear Creek to the Pinhoti Trail. Riders will then ride sections 1 and 2 of the Pinhoti Trail to get back to Mulberry. The long option starts the same way, but will continue climbing beyond the Bear Creek Overlook to the Mountaintown Creek trailhead. At the end of Mountaintown, riders will have a little bit of gravel to ride to get back to Pinhoti 1 and 2.
Here’s my GPS data from last year, although I chose to add a little extra mileage in by climbing up to Bear Creek before hitting Pinhoti 1 and 2.
This is a group ride, not a race. There is no neutral support or sag stations out on the course. Some folks are going to ride it fast, others not so much. Whichever way you choose is fine, just know that it’s your responsibility to make sure you can make it back. That said, we highly recommend using the buddy system. Find a friend to ride with beforehand, or make new ones at Mulberry.
What to Do
This event is limited to 75 participants, so be sure to sign up quickly. To do so, visit Mulberry Gap’s website here: http://www.mulberrygap.com/register-for-events. There is no fee for the ride itself, but parking at Mulberry Gap will cost $10/rider, which will also get you access to the shower so you can clean up after the ride. Lunch will be offered as well for an additional $10. Sign up before March 31st and get parking and lunch for just $15! And of course, we’ll provide the post-ride adult beverages to help you rehydrate.
If you need to reserve a cabin or tent site, get in touch directly with Mulberry Gap by sending them an email (firstname.lastname@example.org
Hope to see you there!